Bridgewater Stays Put — For Now

So Bridgewater Associates is not moving to Stamford after all.

Westport’s biggest employer — a hedge fund that manages $120 billion in global investments — has decided that despite $115 million in tax incentives offered by Gov. Malloy,  it will not move its 1,225 employees to a controversial site in Stamford.

(The controversy, in case you have not been paying attention to corporate welfare news, is 3-fold: the site in the South End would displace a large boatyard; it might have violated the state’s Coastal Management Act, and Gov. Malloy is the former [cough cough] mayor of Stamford.)

Bridgewater’s employees are spread among 2 sites here. Some work at Nyala Farms off I-95 Exit 18, but the majority are in the gorgeous Glendinning site on Weston Road. (That’s why you see upscale buses traveling up and down Roseville Road every morning and afternoon.)

The Bridgewater building on Weston Road. Most Westporters have no idea it's here.

The Bridgewater building on Weston Road. Most Westporters have no idea it’s here.

That Glendinning office is truly a gem. Hidden from view (except on the Ford Road side), it’s serene and verdant. I can’t imagine a nicer hedge fund environment anywhere.

What will Bridgewater do now? Perhaps renovate the property. (Keeping in mind — we hope — the restrictions agreed upon when it was built more than 40 years ago, as a rare office complex in a residential neighborhood. Glendinning was a major marketer, when Westport was the marketing capital of the world.)

Perhaps add a “meditation area.” (Founder Ray Dalio does things other hedge fund owners don’t.)

Perhaps Bridgewater will keep looking for a new site.

Whatever they do, let’s hope they don’t ask for a $115 million subsidy from the state.

Or even $15.

That’s the kind of thing that gives hedge funds a bad name.



5 responses to “Bridgewater Stays Put — For Now

  1. A. David Wunsch

    “Whatever they do, let’s hope they don’t ask for a $115 million subsidy from the state.

    Or even $15.”

    As is often observed, we are a country that practices socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor.

    A. David Wunsch
    Staples High School 1956

  2. Matthew Mandell

    The Glendenning site was given new approvals for modification late last year from P&Z. The P&Z showed some good flexibility here. They are allowing Bridgewater to fiddle around with the building to make it better for them, while at the same time fix up some environmental issues. A win-win.

  3. David J Loffredo

    I expect they’ll either ask for a major redevelopment of the Glendinning site so they can put all 1300 employees under one roof, or perhaps they’ll take over the mostly abandoned UBS building in Stamford. In either case keeping Bridgewater close is good for Westport.

  4. Jane Lassner Zeitchick

    As long as they don’t touch the beautiful adjacent Leonard Schine Preserve, I’m OK with whatever they do.

  5. Bart Shuldman

    As we watch our Governor make mistakes about who maintains bridges (Norwalk metro north debacle) and raids the transportation fund to balance his budget (despite the largest tax increase in the states history) he was willing to give a billionaire over $100 million in tax breaks to move to Stamford. And making matters worse, the governor tried to side step environmental issues where Bridgewater wanted to move. You can’t make this up.

    Now the deal is dead because Stamford turned against it. Fantastic. I guess Malloy did not consider his issues overcame any feelings for the past mayor.

    The new owners of Nyala are good people. Maybe with some help from the Bridgewater will consider staying in Westport–where his employees have enjoyed our town. And maybe the $100 million plus that the governor was about to give away can be used to fix the Norwalk bridge he forgot he was in charge of doing so. And maybe Bridgewater will look at this as a positive. If they like Connecticut and it appears they do, they will become proactive and help the state and our town. Not take anything away from it.